City Centre Guesthouse

87 Shandwick Place, Edinburgh, EH2 4SD, United Kingdom
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Photos

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The gateThe gate

Forum Posts

Best summer month to avoid midgets in Scotland?

by song99

Best summer month to avoid midgets in Scotland?

I am planning a 3 month England, Wales, Soctland, N. Ireland, and Ireland summer trip (starting in Brighton, and working up the west coast (via Wales). My question is when to arrive in Scotland when the insect problem (midgets) is not as severe? I am planning on a hiking tour of Scotland, and hitchhiking as well. If I know when the best time to visit Scotland is, I'll know to start 3-4 weeks earlier in Brighton. It should take a bout a month to take in SW England, Wales, and NE England (before entering Scotland).

Thanks

Re: Best summer month to avoid midgets in Scotland?

by jamesfmunro

First - a midget is a small person. Otherwise known as a dwarf, a vertically challenged person, or person of restricted growth. Other terms are used in Scotland.

The insect you refer to is a midge, or midgie. Basically, June to August are the peak months. The don't like wind or dessiccation so dry, warm windy weather is the best time to do your hiking. Unfortunately, those conditions don't occur that often for any length of time. Use repellant - lots of it. Take antihistamine pills if you react badly to bites.

Re: Best summer month to avoid midgets in Scotland?

by qaminari

LOL! Ah, those pesky midgets...

Re: Best summer month to avoid midgets in Scotland?

by scotlandscotour

:)

Midge season is June - August, roughly, as stated above, with life getting far more comfortable in September, after the first frost (sadly now often into October).

The best tactic is the be in a breezy location, since the midge is uesless in windy conditions (>4mph winds). Bright sun and dry conditions are not good for them either. Hence why the East of Scotland gets far less midges. Hint.

So, the worst situation is to be hitchkiking in Central or Western Scotland on a still, overcast day in summer, with a light drizzle rain coming straight down in a fine spray (no wind, see). You are unable to move fast enough to create a breeze, so you are midge food. Then you need excellent repellent, humour or to be indoors! Since the roads are mostly in the glens / valleys the shelter can then mean midge attacks.

If it gets really bad anytime, spend the money on a bus ticket, head East, or get your walking boots on and head up hill, high enough to find a breeze!

That all said, it is part of the experience - and yet should not be thought of as so bad as to not come! Some people are ignorant of midge attacks for years. Sadly, I am not so lucky. Mornings and evenings are generally worse. It is only a few days of the year that they are really bad though!

Good luck with your lifts!

Re: Best summer month to avoid midgets in Scotland?

by song99

BUt the highlands are in the WEST of Scotland, oh well, I will drench myself in DEET.

Re: Best summer month to avoid midgets in Scotland?

by Beausoleil

We were there in May, leaving the first week of June, and did not experience midges. There was quite a bit of rain though.

Re: Best summer month to avoid midgets in Scotland?

by scotlandscotour

Better to use Avon's Skin so Soft oil - see this article:

http://heritage.scotsman.com/scotland/Avons-spray-finds-calling-as.2654251.jp

And when the trip is over you can still keep using it or give it as a gift.

Oh, there is excellent walking east of the watershed - try the Cairngorms, still Highlands, second highest peak in Scotland :)

Travel Tips for Edinburgh

Architecture

by HORSCHECK

Edinburgh is Scotland's second largest city and offers many architectural interesting buildings. Most of them are within walking distance of the city centre. The Royal Mile in the Old Town if full with historic buildings like the Gothic style St Giles Cathedral, the Neo-Classical City Chambers or the medieval Castle.

HOGMANAY

by hevbell

I have so many fond memories of my time living in Edinburgh but among the most memorable are probably those when I spent Hogmanay (New years Eve to those non-Scots :)) at the huge street party that takes place annually on Princes Street. The atmosphere was amazing last time I was there. There are fireworks at midnight, live bands (this year was Moby), funfair etc The fair lasts all week and there are other events such as a torchlit procession.

Electricity

by keeweechic

The electricity supply voltage is 230V. Equipment rated at 220V may function, but it is advisable to check with the manufacturer before using it in the UK. The standard plug in the UK is a three flat pin model.
.

ROSSLYN CASTLE

by BerniShand

When you visit Rosslyn Chaple take a few minutes to walk down to view the ruins of Rosslyn Castle. the castle is not open to the public, but the exterior can be seen

looking out over Roslin Glen the castle, which is still owned by the Sinclair family, played an important part in the wars of independance, in 1303 a small group of Scots defeated the much larger English army three times within 24 hours, and during the British Civil War the castle was besieged by Cromwell`s troops

there are several legends about hauntings connected to the castle, including a black knight on horseback, a howling dog the `Mauthie Doog`, and the story that if you stand on a certain step within the castle and blow a trumpet then treasure will be found
judging by the delapidated state of the castle it is more likely to collapse than to reveal treasure at the blast of a trumpet

Photographic Bookshop

by tzuki about Beyond Words

This little bookshop has some of the most extraordinary books about Photography, some of them, with incredible prices!

If you like Photography, you will find Beyond Words as one of your favourite places in Edinburgh, to spend hours and hours.

.... as I did! They sell all sorts of Photography books:
Travel, General, Photographers, Calendars, Cards, ..... some of them at very good bargains! You can spend as much as your pocket allow you.....

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